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Bite Work in the Snow

Bite Work in the Snow

Last week we had the pleasure of working with our good friend, Forrest Micke, to produce a 3 part series of online training courses titled, The Heeler's Toolbox. After 3 long days of filming we decided it was time to take a break and blow off some steam. This video is the result of that break.

We have accumulated 58.9 inches of snow fall here in Wisconsin this winter. With the help of Mark Keating filling in as our cameraman, we ventured out into the arctic to do a little bite work in 4 feet of snow. Working dogs in that much snow proved to be much more physically demanding for both the decoy and the dog than we had expected, but we still had a blast playing in the snow.

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Leerburg Q&A
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Question: I recently purchased the send away DVD and had a question. Do you eventually send the dog out without a target to run to in training?

Hello from Australia,

I have recently purchased the Send Away DVD and am currently teaching my 17month old dobe the send away. I have trained her to work from a touch pad and the touch pad was gradually replaced with a disc (water frisbee), which virtually sits flat on the ground. The cue to go to the touchpad/or disc is "step."

My sendaway pre-cue is "where is it," then the actual sendaway cue is "go" followed by "step" - she is progressing well. Only still doing short distances in the backyard at home. When would you just say the send away cue "go" without then saying "step"? Should I later be decreasing the size of the disc and do you eventually send them out without a disc or target to run to for their training? Will be competing in ANKC Obedience eventually - unfortunately nothing available in Australia like your dog sports, such as Mondioring, etc.

Your DVDs are really well put together and I hope one day to be able to go to the Michael Ellis School.


Cindy's Response:

I can't tell you when to only use the send away cue, every dog's training is different. I would not change the target you are sending her to... I would keep it the same. As long as you can make it flat and she can't see it from a distance that's fine.

I always have the target out there in training. My guess is that it will be many training sessions from now. My dog will have done literally hundreds of send aways before I ever do a formal one. I want my dog to be so patterned to the exercise that it's second nature. You have had the DVD on send aways for only about a month so you have lots of reps to do before you should be thinking about doing formal send aways with no target. You can start to wait a bit to say "step" and see if the dog offers it without your help. If not, then you'll need to help for a while longer.

I do them in many locations, always starting with a short one while the dog is learning to generalize this exercise. You will then eventually add distractions as well.

I hope this helps.
Cindy Rhodes



Thanks very much for your advice and help, sounds good. I now fully understand what to do and feel confident to follow through with her training of the send away.

Thanks again

For more questions on this topic, see our Q&A on Obedience.

We get a number of Q&As every week, if you would like to read this week's Q&As, click here and check out the 'Recent Questions' section!

Have a question for Ed & Cindy? Try the Leerburg Q&A Search. If you can't find the answer to your question by using our search engine, you can email Cindy here at Leerburg at If you have your spam filter on, make sure you set it to receive our replies!!!

Customer Comments

On Leerburg's Grow Your Pups with Bones Book

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